Community life

South Bucks launches web quiz

February 25, 2010

South Bucks Jewish Community went cyber for its first quiz supper, also involving entrants from Birmingham, Brighton and Gloucester, who competed by internet. A team from the host congregation prevailed after a sudden death tie-break with a group from Brighton.

The hope is to repeat the exercise next year with participation from additional communities. Affiliated to Liberal Judaism, South Bucks draws members from areas including Amersham, Chesham, High Wycombe, Aylesbury, Tring and Berkhamsted.


Golders Green Jewish sites on walking routes

February 25, 2010

Golders Green sites of Jewish interest are on the routes of three community walks designed by a group of north Londoners.

The walks have been created as part of Suburbia, the London Transport Museum exhibition. The walks, lasting between 45 and 90 minutes, are free and take in the London Jewish Cultural Centre premises, Golders Green Synagogue in Dunstan Road and Hoop Lane cemetery.


Princes' Road synagogue receives Heritage funding

By Robyn Rosen, February 25, 2010

The historic Princes Road Synagogue in Liverpool has received £71,000 from English Heritage towards the restoration of its roof and the surrounding stairwell area.

Princes Road, the only Grade I listed synagogue outside of London, received the money as part of a £15.7 million distribution to places of worship through English Heritage and the Heritage Lottery Fund.


Moshe Ya'alon's video message to World Ort

By Marcus Dysch, February 25, 2010

Israeli vice-premier Moshe Ya'alon took part in a video conference with London activists to discuss the challenges his country faces.

The exchange was hosted by World Ort at its Camden offices, allowing 30 community members to quiz Mr Ya'alon on issues such as Islamist extremism and Iran's nuclear threat.

Speaking from his Jerusalem office, Mr Ya'alon said: "You are the people who can best confront the biggest strategic threat, which is the attempt to delegitimise and dehumanise the state of Israel."


Fairtrade kipot are fashion statement

By Robyn Rosen, February 25, 2010

Communities throughout the country are using Fairtrade Fortnight to further their support for ethical trading.

A guide published by the Jewish Social Action Forum (JHub) has been distributed to shuls nationwide explaining how they can become involved.

The forum has received hundreds of orders for kipot - many personalised for simchahs - which are made by Indian co-operatives from ethically sourced cotton yarn.


May Mendleson, 108, is Britain's oldest Jew

By Ruth Levene, February 25, 2010

May Mendleson doesn't like to have a fuss made of her - even on her 108th birthday.

Celebrations were low key for Mrs Mendleson, believed to be Britain's oldest Jew, at Cardiff's Penylan Jewish home, where she has been a resident for five years. However, she was delighted that her son Astor travelled from London with his wife Carole.

Born in Glasgow, she moved to London before marriage and took jobs including secretary to Hackney Conservative Party.

She met her husband Harry at a wedding where she was a bridesmaid and he was the best man.


Hull care facility spreads its net for residents

By Marcus Dysch, February 25, 2010

Hull's Jewish care home is hoping to attract new residents from neighbouring communities whose residential facilities are over-subscribed.

The committee at Menorah House is looking further afield to help fill its rooms, while assisting those unable to access kosher homes in other cities.

Ranked excellent at its last key unannounced inspection, the home has 24 flats, all with en-suite facilities and sitting rooms.

Harold Flasher, chairman of Menorah House's building committee, said the move was intended to help the home weather the recession.


Work starts on £1m Immanuel project

February 25, 2010

A ground-breaking ceremony was held on Tuesday to mark the start of building work at Immanuel College in Bushey.

An eight-classroom block costing nearly £1 million is planned for completion in time for the next academic year. The classrooms will be multi-functional, providing large or more intimate teaching areas and an examination hall.

"We are investing for the future of Immanuel College," said governors' chair Dr Sara Levene. "This new block will add state-of-the-art facilities to the campus".


United Synagogue keen for law change over JFS

By Jonathan Kalmus, February 25, 2010

United Synagogue president Simon Hochhauser this week stressed the need to push for legislative change following the Supreme Court ruling on Jewish school admissions.

During a lively debate with Manchester leaders, educationists and Orthodox and Reform shul members at Whitefield Hebrew Congregation, Mr Hochhauser outlined his concerns over the ruling, which prohibits schools from choosing pupils according to their parents' Jewish status.

He suggested that it could also have implications for synagogues and communal charities.


Esther Ranzten launches Who Do You Think You Are show

By Demian Smith, February 25, 2010

Responding to a growing interest in family history research, the Jewish Genealogical Society will be exhibiting at the Who Do You Think You Are? show at London's Olympia this weekend.

JGS education officer Jeanette Rosenberg said "people are studying their genealogy to find out where their family have got to. They are keen to connect with living relatives all over the world, since frequently families were separated by the Holocaust."

This year, the show organisers have created a specific website area to help Jews trace their ancestors.